TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The University of Alabama football team put in a roughly two-hour practice in shells on Monday afternoon outside on the Thomas-Drew Practice Fields in preparation for this weekend’s Southeastern Conference road contest with the No. 8/6 Georgia Bulldogs.
The Crimson Tide’s first practice of the new week focused on planning and preparation for a Georgia team that is 4-0 overall, including a 3-0 mark inside Sanford Stadium. The Tide will look to limit a Bulldog offense that ranks near the top of every offensive category. Alabama and Georgia will meet for a 2:39 p.m. CT kickoff in Athens on CBS. Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson and Allie LaForce will have the call for the Tide’s first contest on CBS this season.
Practice will continue for the next three days before the Crimson Tide uses Friday to travel to its first true road contest of the 2015 season. UA owns the all-time series advantage, 37-25-4, and came away with a 32-28 win in the last meeting between the two squads at the 2012 SEC Championship.
Head Coach Nick Saban
“Comments on the last game, it was obviously a good one for our team. It’s great defensively when you have a team effort where we put together a shutout. I was really pleased with the way our guys responded in that game. We got to play a lot of players in that game, which I think helps the development in a lot of young players at certain positions, and now we have quite of few young players involved in the game so that’s good for them. I have a lot of faith in this team; we are certainly a developing team right now. We have got to play with more passion and aggressiveness on a consistent basis and be confident in what we are doing. We need to focus on what we need to do to play well down in and down out. We have just got to be aggressive, that’s the most important thing for our team to do right now.
“We had our players of the week: Calvin Ridley and Kenyan Drake on offense. Seven guys on defense, I think you’ve got them all. It was an entire defensive team effort, and we should of given it to all the guys, but we played so many players we just gave it to the guys who had 10-plus production points. On special teams, Adam Griffith and Cyrus Jones did a really good job.
“Jonathan Allen will be at practice today, so we don’t really have any injury updates. Jabriel Washington will probably be available for this game. He practiced some last week, and we are hopeful he will be okay to play in this game as well.
“This game is obviously an exciting game for our team. Any time you play what is arguably one of the best teams in the country – Georgia – based on what they’ve been able to do over the past four games, and I’m talking about a total complete team. (Georgia head coach) Mark (Richt) has done a fantastic job in his tenure there, which has been a long time. They’ve been consistently very good. This year’s team has a lot of players coming back. Offensively, defensively, special teams; they are very solid in all areas as their statistics really prove out. Greyson Lambert has done an outstanding job for them at quarterback. He has been very efficient, one of the most efficient quarterbacks in the country, and has created a tremendous amount of balance for them because they do have one of the best running teams in the country. Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, both outstanding players and both of them are very, very productive for their team. (Malcolm) Mitchell has been a big player for them at receiver, so they have a lot of weapons. Defensively, they are one of the highest-ranked teams statistically in the conference as well as the country. (Defensive coordinator) Jeremy Pruitt has done a really good job with their players and with their scheme. They play hard and very aggressive, they are a very, very good team. This is a good team all the way around, and it’s going to be challenging to go on the road and play a team like this. I think our team is excited about the challenges that we have ahead of us. We certainly want to focus on the things we need to do, and go over there and play the best game possible.”